I am wondering if GDP per capita in a country like Switzerland can have a low GDP per capita but still have a high standard of living, as compared to say the US GDP per capita. If this were true, what could we say further about GDP per capita.Nothing about the definition of GDP suggests that it is necessarily a measure of standard of living. For instance, in an extreme example, a country which exported 100 per cent of its production and imported nothing would still have a high GDP, but a very poor standard of living. The same way, for a country like Switzerland, which might import everything would have a very low GDP but a high standard of living. The argument in favor of using GDP is not that it is a good indicator of standard of living, but rather that (all other things being equal) standard of living tends to increase when GDP per capita increases. This makes GDP a proxy for standard of living, rather than a direct measure of it. GDP per capita can also be seen as a proxy of labor productivity. As the productivity of the workers increases, employers must compete for them by paying higher wages. Conversely, if productivity is low, then wages must be low or the businesses will not be able to make a profit.
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